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Sixers Almost Blow Another One

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It wasn't a good win. It wasn't a solid win. It wasn't a pretty win. It may have even been a dangerous win, but it was definitely a win. After blowing a 24-point lead in the second half, Lou Williams hit a series of clutch shots to snatch victory from the jaws of, well, an embarrassing collapse.

In the intro I said this may have been a dangerous win, let me explain why. The Golden State Warriors are a terrible defensive team, playing for a coach who loves to play ridiculously small lineups even when he has a full roster to work with (right now theyr'e missing 6 regulars). The Sixers won this game by basically building a huge lead, then trading baskets down the stretch. The Warriors are one of the few teams in the league against whom this pattern of "closing out" games is possible. Unfortunately, it's the game plan Jordan prefers to close out games with, hence, it's dangerous when a silly idea actually works because it means it'll be put into practice against teams that it has no prayer of working against.

Anyway, here's your rotation chart. Big numbers: 45 minutes for Iguodala, 40 minutes for Lou, 38 minutes for Jrue. Only 8 players used. Remember, this is the front end of a back-to-back.

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I'm not sure I need to go into any deep analysis on this one. The first half was all about running a little bit of offense to shake free a clean look. It worked for basically everyone and the Sixers scored easily. On the defensive end, Jrue pressured the ball, they did a decent job of sticking to the shooters on the outside, and GSW forced up bad jumper after bad jumper. In the second half, the Sixers started settling for threes, GSW started hitting threes and they came back.

When the game was in question in the fourth, your player of the game Lou Williams dropped 11 of his 26 points, including the dagger three to seal it. He more than made up for leaving Anthony Morrow wide open for consecutive corner threes when GSW was capping off their comeback.

Jrue tied his career high with 15 points, and really shined for a couple of stretches offensively. Defensively, he did a stellar job on Curry for most of the night. He did give up a couple of driving layups late, though.

Lest anyone get confused by the results late in the fourth, this game wasn't won because the Sixers suddenly found a killer instinct, it was won because Golden State couldn't play any defense when it mattered, and the hole GSW had to dig out of was too deep. Lou and Iguodala both hit some very, very big shots, but this game should have never been in question in the fourth. Jason Kapono and Jodie Meeks should've been out there mopping up while Lou and Iguodala rested for tomorrow night's game.

Player of The Game: Mr. Williams. 26 points on only 14 shots, 10 boards, 7 assists, 1 steal and 3 turnovers.
Team Record: 22-34
Up Next: @ Phoenix tomorrow night.
Play(s) of The Game: Jrue's thunderous lefty jam on the break over Curry. The alley-oop from Jrue (beyond half court, on a line) to Iguodala. And finally, the three by Lou to stretch the lead back to 6 points with under a minute to go. They inbounded the ball to Jrue, who got the ball back to Iguodala beyond the three-point line. He dumped it to Brand on the blocks. When the double came on the baseline side, Brand took one dribble into the lane, then hit Jrue in the corner with only 4 or 5 seconds left on the shot clock. Two men rotated to Jrue, who hit Lou on the wing for an open look at a deep three. Nothing but net as the shot clock expired. Excellent ball movement on that play.
by Brian on Feb 24 2010
Tags: A Win | Basketball | Golden State Warriors | Lou Williams | Sixers |